Canku Ota Logo

Canku Ota

Canku Ota Logo

(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


November 15, 2003 - Issue 100


pictograph divider


It's Cranberry Time

Dancing Cranberries: Wisconsin Nutrition Education NetworkCranberries are one of the few fruits native to North America. In fact, long before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, cranberries were a staple in the diets of American Indians.

According to The Cranberry Book (1883), wild cranberries ripened in such abundance that they were eaten fresh, ground, or mashed with cornmeal and baked into bread. Dried berries were mixed with wild game to form pemmican, a survival ration for long trips. Maple sugar or honey was used to sweeten the berries' tangy flavor.

Cranberry juice was used by the Indians to dye rugs and blankets. They made poultices from unripe berries, and even believed the berry had special powers to calm the nerves.

This cheery little fruit adds more than just zip to your meals! It's high in fiber, has just 25 calories per 1/2 cup, and provides over 10% of the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C. Cranberries are also low in sodium and are a source of Vitamins A & B, calcium, phosphorus, and iron.

Special powers aside, one thing is certain -- cranberries taste great! The following recipes are some of our favorites. Try them yourself and see if you don't agree that cranberries make everything taste better!


Cranberry-Apple Compote




  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange rind
  • 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
  • 4 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 1/4 cups diced peeled Granny Smith apple
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
Combine the first 3 ingredients in a large saucepan; bring to a boil, and cook 5 minutes or until reduced to 1/2 cup. Add the cranberries and diced apple; cook over medium heat 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in syrup, and cook an additional 5 minutes. Discard the cinnamon stick. Serve compote at room temperature.

Yield: 9 servings (serving size: 1/3 cup)

Cranberry Streusel Pie


  • 1/2 (15-ounce) package refrigerated piecrusts
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour



Fit piecrust into a 9-inch pieplate according to package directions; fold edges under, and crimp.
Stir together cranberries and next 4 ingredients, and spoon in-to piecrust.

Whisk together egg and remaining ingredients, and pour over cranberry mixture.

Bake at 400° for 20 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350°, and bake 30 minutes.

Cran-Apple Relish




  • 5 cups chopped peeled cooking apple (such as McIntosh or Braeburn; 2 pounds)
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick


Combine all ingredients in a large, heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally; continue to cook until thick (about 30 minutes), stirring frequently. Discard cinnamon. Mash with a potato masher. Cover and chill.

Yield: 18 servings (serving size: 1/4 cup)

Candied Cranberries


  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 3/4 cup cranberry-apple juice drink
  • 3 1/2 cups fresh cranberries



Combine first 3 ingredients in a small nonaluminum saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat and pour syrup mixture over cranberries in a medium-size heatproof bowl. Place bowl on a steamer rack in a large Dutch oven over simmering water. Cover and steam 30 minutes. Remove bowl of cranberries. Let cool completely without stirring.

Cover bowl with cheesecloth; let stand at room temperature for 3 days, stirring occasionally. (Mixture will become thick.)

Transfer cranberries, using a slotted spoon, to a large mesh wire rack placed over a wax paper-lined jellyroll pan. Store cranberry syrup in a glass container in refrigerator for another use. Let fruit dry, uncovered, for 2 to 3 days, turning occasionally.

Note: Candied Cranberries can be prepared and refrigerated up to 2 weeks ahead.

Yield: 2 1/2 cups candied cranberries and 2 cups syrup

Dancing Cranberries: Wisconsin Nutrition Education Network

pictograph divider

Home PageFront PageArchivesOur AwardsAbout Us

Kid's PageColoring BookCool LinksGuest BookEmail Us


pictograph divider

  Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.  

Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.

Canku Ota Logo   Canku Ota Logo

The "Canku Ota - A Newsletter Celebrating Native America" web site and its design is the

Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 of Paul C. Barry.

All Rights Reserved.

Site Meter
Thank You

Valid HTML 4.01!